Saturday, March 22, 2008

Swollen Rivers and Rising Temps Call Paddlers

Into the Green
Originally uploaded by FreeWine
The Spring rains have landed right-on-time here in Oklahoma.

The Deep Fork River is swollen out of its regular channel backing up flood water into Thousand Acre Lake at DFWR and filling up small creeks like Okmulgee Creek with extra deep water and not much current.

Dianne and I got to paddle the areas above during the flood last summer. I loved the color contrast you see when paddling the Deep Fork River floodwater in Summer. Since Spring has just barely begun in Oklahoma, there isn't much green to see this time. I have noticed the daffodils and pear trees are blooming now, sure signs that mushroom hunting season is right around the corner!

I hope I can make it out onto the water this weekend, but the weather has been a bit uncooperative lately. We have been enjoying 70 degree weekdays, only to see a cold front sweep in for the weekend...ya gotta hate that!

I see that Al is trying to arrange a Broken Bow, Oklahoma trip for the Oklahoma Flatwater Paddlers in mid-April. I'm always up for a trip to Broken Bow, if I can talk Dianne into it. Broken Bow is usually about ten degrees warmer than Okmulgee.

I heartily reccomend purchasing a Spray Skirt for paddling the Lower Mountain Fork River in Broken Bow...even if you plan to rent a kayak. Even if you can't roll your kayak 30 different ways like Dubside, you will find that the sprayskirt will make your sit-inside-kayak much less likely to fill up with water when you get a little bit sideways. This happens to paddlers everyday on the LMF River, and it often happens in water too shallow for a complete roll over.

Obviously, it is a good idea to use the spray skirt when paddling in flood water due to the increased chance of contamination in the water.

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Anonymous said...

Wow, I just love the pictures that are posted here. I bet it is so relaxing. Thanks for sharing.

yakker said...

I think we got about 6 inches of rain on that last gulley washer!! I love this time of year. Watching the prarie come back to life. All the rain helps, and I'm going to heed your suggestion on a spray skirt for the yak. I hope you can make to the Lower Mountain Fork.

Thomas said...

Thanks for taking the time to comment, April!

Yakker, I will be paddling the LMF sometime this year, but I don't know when. I will be quite sad if I have to miss the big Oklahoma Flatwater Paddlers get together in April, but so far, it looks like I will be missing it.

Sometime in early summer we plan to take Dylan down the Elk River in Noel, MO. I will ping you when we set the date, probably in late May.